Solar power systems for capstans

For decades, power cables have been installed on the bottom of the port or sea to provide mooring dolphins with electricity allowing them to power energy-intensive capstans.

Installing, securing and protecting these cables is time consuming, costly and high-risk operation. Furthermore it is not uncommon for the power lines to be damaged by anchors or during dredging activities. Equipment that is (unexpectedly) out of order can compromise the safety of mooring operations and repairing the damaged lines involves the same costs and risks of installing the cables.

Solar-powered solutions avoid these issues by removing the need for underwater cables altogether. By doing so, the lead time for the construction of dolphins and berths is reduced. Maintenance costs are low, as has been proven by usage so far. And of course, using solar energy reduces energy costs and fits within a vision of sustainability.

Our robust autonomous solar power system can be delivered ATEX certified and, if desired, we can add work lights and /or navigation aid. With our advanced telemetry system, the system can be controlled remotely.

Solar energy in port of rotterdam
Solar Power System


In addition to the design and supply of a solar system to power our capstan, we can supply a wide range of options. In order to increase safety of both mooring operators and vessel berthing operations, the following components can be integrated in our solar system:

  • Working lights to lighten the working area of the operators;
  • Navigation lights to mark the berths (in conformance with IALA normatives);
  • An integrated data system for logging relevant data;
  • A web based software solution to monitor e.g. the actual available power and status of the systems.
  • All components can be supplied as explosion proof components, certified according to ATEX or IECex guidelines.


Solar powered capstans Port of Rotterdam

After a pilot project with Solar power systems at a port in 2014, the design was further optimised for installation and its size was reduced. This second generation of the Solar design was then ordered by the Port of Rotterdam, to power quick release mooring hook units with capstans, integrated with working lights and navigation lights. Straatman supplied all mooring equipment for both non-hazardous area as well as ATEX classified areas. A remotely reachable software system gives the port operators the possibility to approach each single mooring dolphin by web, which leads to reliable and safe mooring operations. Today, our solar power systems can be found at many different locations at the Port of Rotterdam.


Quick release hooks with solar systems


Green berthing area Port of Hamburg

Hamburg’s new berthing area was completed in 2019 and serves as a waiting area for vessels with a deep draft that depend on the tide to enter the port of Hamburg. Straatman powered this newly-built berthing area by nineteen solar panels. These panels provide power to quick release mooring hook units with integrated capstans as well as working lights to guarantee safe berthing.  By using LoRa technology, essential details are shared, including available power, energy consumption, battery quality and a log of the capstans use. This allows the Port of Hamburg to monitor the status of the mooring systems in a web app and plan just-in-time preventive maintenance.


Solar Power System Port of Hamburg

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Recent Solar Systems projects

Solar powered mini capstans

We engineer and manufacture custom designed capstans in any shape and size. For this project we were asked to provide a winching solution for a remote and powerless area. Our off grid solar powered system provides the required energy for a 1.5kW capstan, giving it a hauling speed of ±15m/min and a running pull capacity of 500kg!

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Our mooring and dredging expertise combined

A couple of years ago we used our expertise to design remotely operated 250 tons quick release hooks, equipped with a solar powered hydraulic powerpack. These are used by a mega cutter suction dredger on their left and right anchor line pontoons, for safe deployment and operation. The lines are used to move the ship in a left-to-right motion, sweeping their dredging work along the sea or river bed.

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Calandkanaal mooring project ready for installation

After a lot of hard work in the last months of last year, we are happy to inform you that we have successfully completed the assembly and testing of the 24 ATEX and Safe Area solar systems for the expansion of the berths 81 and 82 in the Calandkanaal, Port of Rotterdam. All systems were completely tested in our factory to ensure a smooth and efficient installation on site coming April 2022.

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What to expect from our Straatman team

High Quality Products

Our products are designed and manufactured with attention to detail. We use the best materials and check everything to make sure you get the best.

Excellent Service Level

We’re here to help you. Our team is always ready to answer your questions and make sure you’re happy with our service.

Continuous Innovation

We always try to be better. We keep learning, improving and investing in research and development so we can give you the newest and best solutions.

Certified on Every Necessary Level

We meet all the important standards. This means our products are safe, reliable, and trustworthy.

Dedicated and Enthusiastic Team

Our team loves what they do. They work hard to meet your needs and make you happy.

We Do What We Promise

We keep our promises. You can trust us to do what we say we will.

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